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Full text of "The Discovery Of The Child"

NATURE IN EDUCATION                        97

monotony, his eyes always looking towards the window and staring.
into empty space. If a storm of wind arose suddenly, or if the
sun all at once emerged from the clouds and lit up the heavens
with brilliance, the boy broke out in shouts of laughter, as if
almost convulsed with joy. Sometimes the moments of joy were
replaced by a kind of frenzied rage; he twisted his arms, drovfr
his clenched hands into his eyes, grinding his teeth and becoming,
dangerous to all around him.

" One morning the snow was falling abundantly, whilst her
was still in bed; on waking up he uttered a cry of joy, leapt from
the bed, ran to the window, then to the door; back and forth he-
went impatiently between the two; then dashed out undressed into-
the garden. There, giving utterance to his delight in shrill cries,,
he raced about, rolled in the snow, gathered up great handfuls of
it and swallowed it with incredible avidity.

" But his sensations were not always shown in such a lively
and noisy manner when he was affected by the great displays of
Nature. It is worth noting that in certain cases they assumed"
a calm form of regret and melancholy. Thus when severe weather
drove everybody else from the garden, the savage of Aveyron
chose that time to wander into it. He used to make a tour of it
several times and then seat himself on the border of the fountain.

" I have spent whole hours, with intense pleasure, watching hi™
in this position, noting how insensibly that face of his, vacant and
twisted into grimaces, assumed an expression of sadness and melan-
choly reminiscence, whilst his eyes gazed fixedly at the surface of the-
water, on which from time to time he would throw some dead leaves,
*" When, during the fine night of full moon, a beam of silvery
rays penetrated into his room, rarely did he fail to wake up and
station himself at the window. During a great part of the night he
would stand there motionless, his head thrust forward, his eyes
dwelling on the moonlit landscape, immersed in a kind of ecstasy
of contemplation, the immobility and the silence of which were
interrupted only at long intervals by a breath long as a sigh, dying
away in a plaint of lamentation."
7